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Davie-based public safety startup, CERA, places 2nd at eMerge, but could be the most impactful pitch yet

on April 23, 2022 / by Nikki Cabus ,

Read Time 3 Minutes

300 seconds. That’s that amount of time is takes for an active shooter to cause mass casualty at your child’s school, in a mall, or at an event venue. Due to extremely outdated technology, first responders aren’t able to respond fast enough or communicate through the chaos during an incident.

100 startups were chosen out of 1000 applicants to pitch at eMerge Americas’ Startup Showcase this year. Only five were chosen as finalists to pitch in front of judges which included Shark Tank’s Kevin O’Leary and Broward-based CERA was one of them. Although the startup took home 2nd place, we think they have the most impactful eMerge pitch to date.

Edward McGovern, Founder of CERA

Edward McGovern, former Major of the Hallandale Beach Police Department and first responder to some of the most tragic events such as the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in 2018 and the Fort Lauderdale Airport shooting in 2017, has developed a technology that will save more lives. Now retired from the police department, Ed is the startup Founder & CEO of CERA.

Critical Event Response Applications, or CERA, is a public safety app that “creates a direct line of communication between law enforcement, emergency medical providers, and individuals on the ground.” CERA greatly assists in containing the scene, neutralizing the threat, and treating and evacuating the injured and in danger. Simply put, it eliminates the chaos and confusion during a critical event to be able to save more lives in a time when time is of the essence.

“CERA’s at the eMerge Americas Startup Showcase was amazing,” said McGovern. “Even though we didn’t take the top prize, watching us start with over 1000 applicants and make it to the final 5 was such an important validation of our company and our mission. We were so proud to be be on that stage, not just representing CERA, but also the Alan B Levan | NSU Broward Center of Innovation, whose help has been invaluable to us,” he continued. “As I walked on stage, I saw guest judges like Kevin “Mr Wonderful” O’Leary, Paul Judge, and Ryan Whittemore sitting under the CERA brand, along with Levan Center and South Florida Tech Hub logos, and thinking how amazing our region is for innovation. I’m more determined than ever.”

Watch McGovern’s pitch for CERA here.

Congratulations to all the companies who pitched that day including the top five finalists: Genially, from Spain, which helps users build interactive digital content, TicketRev, from Boca Raton, which is a reverse event ticket selling platform, CERA, from Davie, offering a group of public safety applications, Togal.AI, from Miami, which helps improve estimating in the construction industry, and MOVIA Robotics, from the UK, which offers robotics that help children on the autism spectrum.

For more information on CERA, visit


Davie-based public safety startup, CERA, places 2nd at eMerge, but could be the most impactful pitch yet